Since her turn as Rey in the Star Wars movies ended with Rise of Skywalker, Daisy Ridley has been much in demand.
Yet the British actress said she would enjoy joining another blockbuster franchise, specifically taking on the role of Spider-Woman in Olivia Wilde’s rumored Sony “Spideyverse” live-action film.
Spinning a web
Introduced in 1977, Spider-Woman has gone through several changes, with more than one woman taking on the name.
The original version was Jessica Drew, who was granted Spider-Man-like powers via a serum. She used them as a heroine for years before seemingly losing her abilities. The character inspired a short-lived cartoon series.
A second Spider-Woman, Julia Carpenter, debuted in 1985 and served in the Avengers. She is now known as Madame Web, a seer in the Spider-Verse.
The name was also used by teenager Mattie Franklin.
There is also Ghost-Spider (or “Spider-Gwen”), the Gwen Stacy of an alternate reality who the radioactive spider bit. The character appeared in the hit Into the Spiderverse animated movie.
Drew later returned as Spider-Woman, and upon reclaiming the name, Jessica has balanced her super-hero life with being a single mother.
A new Spider-Verse?
While Sony has officially confirmed nothing, reports came in August 2020 that Olivia Wilde was developing a female-centric superhero movie for Sony. The actress stoked the rumors by posting a spider emoji alongside a tweet about the project.
This began rumors on a Spider-Woman project. In 2014, Sony hoped to develop a “Spideyverse” of movies based on various side characters. The disappointing performance of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and the character taken for the MCU seemed to derail those plans.
Instead, Sony released Venom, which became a massive hit. Alongside a sequel, the studio is continuing their “Spider-verse” plans, including a Venom sequel and the upcoming Morbius movie, among other projects.
Introducing a Spider-Woman to be the center of the Sony films in a different continuity than the MCU would be logical.
While talking to the actress to promote her upcoming film Chaos Walking, author Sariah Wilson asked Ridley (who doesn’t use social media) about the film’s rumors and got an intriguing answer.
“What so many of you have been waiting for: I asked Daisy Ridley I’d she’d heard the Spider-Woman rumors. She said no and asked what they were. I explained it to her and she said, “OMG, I would love to play Spider-Woman. But is it more of like an extended Spiderverse thing?” I told her about it possibly being a new Marvel Universe and asked if she’d do a franchise like that. She said, “Oh, yeah, for sure!” She talked about friends being involved with franchises and how much content there is these days with streaming services. She said she loved “Into the Spiderverse” and has been loving WandaVision. So yes, she would happily dip her toes into another franchise.”
Ridley as Drew
Obviously, the movie would still be in the developmental stages, yet Ridley wanting the role of Jessica Drew shows the interest behind it.
Star Wars proved the actress has the athleticism and the experience with special effects to handle the part well. The fact that Jessica is British makes casting a British actress logical.
This is not the first time Ridley has been rumored for a notable action heroine. She had been a strong contender to play Lara Croft in the 2017 Tomb Raider movie but ended up losing the part to Alicia Vikander.
The plans for the film can easily change if either Sony or Marvel go in another direction. Yet Ridley throwing her hat into the ring so prominently can push this Spider-Woman film into becoming a reality and let Ridley enjoy being a new big-screen heroine.